Pak onion lands at Mundra port; to boost domestic supply

Ahmedabad/New Delhi, Jan 14 (PTI) The first consignmentof about 200 tonnes of onion imported by the government fromPakistan landed at the Mundra port in Gujarat today and islikely to reach Delhi on Tuesday.

The government had asked state-owned trading agencies PECand STC to import onion to boost domestic supply and rein inthe soaring prices of the kitchen staple.

Since Pakistan had banned trade of onion to India throughland route, the government agencies had to seek the vegetablethrough sea route.

The onion laden ship ''Ocean Promoter'' anchored at Mundraport in the afternoon, port sources said, adding that thefirst consignment was contracted by PEC Ltd.

Another shipment ordered by PEC of 550 tonnes fromPakistan is expected at the same Gujarat port shortly. Itwould also arrive in Delhi by trucks subsequently.

Meanwhile, the Union Agriculture Ministry said, "Thisstock (200 tonnes of onion) is expected to reach Delhi byJanuary 18 (Tuesday) for onward retail sale through MotherDairy, Kendriya Bhandar, Nafed and NCCF."

The onion would be sold at Rs 35/kg which is quiet cheapcompared to the prevailing rates varying around Rs 50-60 a kg.

Delhi and other cities of the country are battlingastronomical hike in onion prices for the last almost onemonth forcing the government to take some stringent measureslike banning onion export and abolishing import duty on theprice sensitive commodity.

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